City & State or ZIP Tonight, this weekend, May 5th...
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City & State or ZIP Tonight, this weekend, May 5th...
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Archive for September, 2012

Beer Town: A toast to new fall beers

Fall is a favorite time for beer drinkers.

Traditionally, it means the arrival of richer, stronger, spicy seasonal beers, Oktoberfest celebrations at restaurants, brew pubs and beer bars, and all sorts of beer festivals.

Tank_7Though not all are seasonal offerings, suddenly there are a bunch of beers newly arrived in Atlanta that have become welcome additions to the fall festivities.

A long time coming, Kansas City’s Boulevard Brewing debuted several of its beers here a few weeks ago, including the wonderfully hoppy and balanced Double-Wide IPA and the luscious saison Tank 7 Farmhouse Ale.

I love drinking saisons this time of year. The bright but robust Belgian-style ale seems to go with almost every kind of food. I’m especially fond of pairing it with pork sausages, roast chicken, and spicy Thai and Vietnamese dishes. And it’s an elegant and versatile star at the Thanksgiving table.

True to style, Tank 7 is pale and effervescent, aromatic and complex, with a citrusy, peppery …

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Kulers Uncorked: Fonseca Bin 27

  • Gil Kulers, CWE

    Gil Kulers, CWE

    Fonseca, Bin No. 27, Porto, Portugal

    Fonseca, Bin No. 27, Porto, Portugal


  • Two Thumbs Way Up
  • Aromas of rich, black cherries, blueberries and a subtle smokiness. Bright flavors of raspberries, dry strawberries, ripe plums with generous spicy notes of nutmeg, clove and cola nut.

Can I share a little secret with you? Hold your newspaper/tablet/laptop a little closer to your ear. Ready?

I’ve about had it with those wimpy, floral rosés, pinot grigios, vinho verdes and all those other wines of summer. Can’t we talk about a wine or two with a little backbone?

Sure, when the trees were budding six months ago, those light-bodied, crisp wines seemed like the perfect tonic for warmer days ahead. Now that I’m contemplating raking those leaves that are starting to hit the deck, let’s not wait any longer for wines full of ample girth and substance.

We could discuss spicy syrahs from the northern Rhône, bold Alexander Valley cabernet sauvignons or the wonderful 2009 Bordeauxs, but I want to go …

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Beer Town: White House homebrew

Regular Beer Town readers may recall that my father was a basement homebrewer, long before president Jimmy Carter signed the 1978 House Resolution that made it legal.

Official White House Logo

Official White House Logo

Of course, the father of our country, George Washington, was a homebrewer, too. So was Thomas Jefferson. And now, thanks to president Obama, there’s homebrewing going on in the White House kitchen.

Recently, after repeated questions from reporters and an online petition, the White House released the recipes for White House Honey Ale and White House Honey Porter on its official blog. The post titled “Ale to the Chief” included a bubbly video of the brewing process.

“Last year President Obama bought a home brewing kit for the kitchen,” wrote White House assistant chef, Sam Kass. “After the few first drafts we landed on some great recipes that came from a local brew shop. We received some tips from a couple of home brewers who work in the White House who helped us amend it and …

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Kulers Uncorked: Esoteric Wine Lists

Gil Kulers, CWE

Gil Kulers, CWE

In a perfect world, sophisticated ladies and gentlemen easily digest the most complicated wine list with, at most, the briefest discussion with their server. We don’t live on that alien planet, especially when it comes to restaurant wine selections.

But what is the alternative? Wine lists filled as far as the eye can see with chardonnays and cabernets from expected winemakers from easy-to-pronounce wine regions?

That is not the answer either.

Many restaurant wine directors go to great lengths cobbling together wine offerings made from nearly forgotten varieties found in surprising locations. This amazes and amuses wine geeks (myself included). Mostly, however, these lists depress and distress the other 99 percent of restaurant patrons, who want to order a wine simply and get on with their meal.

A deftly crafted wine list surely can set a restaurant apart. When a sommelier unleashes such a list, it comes with the responsibility of thoroughly training the …

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Beer Town: Growlers still a growing trend in metro Atlanta

Greg Lindquist, the owner of Best of Brews growler shop in Duluth, succinctly summed it up: “It’s exciting time to be a beer merchant and a beer consumer.”

Lindquist opened the first growler shop outside the perimeter in Sept. 2011. He held his first beer tasting, made legal by a new Duluth ordinance, a few weeks ago. He said his business has been growing steadily, but he hopes offering tastings will “bump things up” even more.

Ale Yeah! growler list Credit: Ale Yeah!

Ale Yeah! growler list Credit: Ale Yeah!

Though long popular in other states, growlers — containers filled and refilled with draft beer to go — first appeared in Georgia in early 2011, when partners Paul Saunders, Denny Young and Sean Galvin opened the Beer Growler in Athens. They’ve since opened stores in Avondale, Alpharetta and Suwanee, and a Brookhaven store is coming soon.

But since 2011, the number of places filling growlers has grown to include the likes of Whole Foods Markets, small beer and wine shops, and even some gas …

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